Some 3.4 million people are reportedly at risk of starvation in Myanmar due to the crisis caused by military coups and protests.
Stephen Anderson, Myanmar Representative of the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP), noted that since the coup, the country’s cost of living and unemployment has been rising.
“If no joint action is taken, at least 3.4 million people in Myanmar will have difficulty meeting their basic food needs in the next 3 to 6 months,” WFP Myanmar Representative Anderson said, noting that the manufacturing, construction, food, and service sector has shrunk significantly due to coups and acts of civil disobedience.
Noting that rice prices in the country have increased by 5 percent and oil prices by 18 percent since the coup, Anderson said the WFP will increase humanitarian activities in the region.
The World Bank had predicted Myanmar’s economy would contract by 10 percent this year due to anti-coup protests and international sanctions.
Myanmar’s military seized rule on February 1st after allegations of election fraud and heightened political tensions in the country.
The military detained several officials and ruling party leaders, including the country’s de facto leader and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi, and declared a state of emergency for a year.
Since the start of the anti-coup protests, 738 people have been killed by armed security forces.
As large-scale demonstrations continue in the country, senior detained government officials continue to be tried in military court.